Baseline Assessment, Modelling Impact and Impact Management

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Question 1: Discuss the concept of “shifting baseline syndrome” as described in your textbook on pg.115. Some possible topics for discussion include:

What challenges does this syndrome pose on proponents, governments, or professionals conducting or assessing baseline conditions?

What negative consequences might this create in terms of environmental impact?

Use an example from your own experience, the news, or the EIA archives to support your discussion.
Question 2: There are some interesting examples of models that are capable of quantifying landscape conditions, cumulative effects and ecosystem services being developed right here in Alberta and through-out Canada.

Some examples of these include:

ALCES (https://www.alces.ca/)

IMWEB (https://www.latornell.ca/wp-content/uploads/files/presentations/2014/Latornell_2014_T2C_Wanhong_Yang.pdf & attached report)

BRIMS (https://www.silvacom.com/case-studies/brims/)

Discuss one of these models or another you are familiar with. Some topics for discussion may include: pros and cons of using the model, possible applications, are models such as these cost prohibited, etc.

An example of an application: Parkland County will be using the IMWEB model to quantify natural capital throughout the County. We will also be developing a system to quantify ecosystem services produced by the agricultural best management practices we are implementing on the ground. These ecosystem services will then be translated into economic savings produced by having natural capital vs built infrastructure, and the benefit to downstream water users in more urban environments (such as the City of Edmonton) will be assessed.
Question 3: Discuss an example of impact management (avoidance, mitigation, remediation, reclamation, compensation; or a more broad management plan, system or program) that has made recent news. Could be from Alberta, Canada, or international. Try and find something that interests you!

 

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